“It’s Been Good for Me”
Interview reprinted with permission from Impact, a newsletter published by the Institute on Community Integration (UCEDD), and the Research and Training Center on Community Living and Employment (RTC-CL), University of Minnesota.
Originally published on the TRC blog, “Putting a Plan Together for Independent Living” walks readers through Angie’s experience with technology use to maintain her independence and continue to live on her own, even though she was experiencing health issues. In a recent Impact article by Sandy Henry, published by the Institute on Community Integration (ICI), and the Research and Training Center on Community Living and Employment (RTC), University of Minnesota, Beth Dykema, a Direct Support Professional with CCRI’s Independent by Design program, interviewed Angie about her home and life.
Beth: Tell me about what your life was like before you started with Independent by Design?
Angie: I lived on my own. I was mostly on my own. I set up my medications, someone called me [in the] morning when it was time to go to work. Someone came to help me with house work.
Beth: Where were you living then?
Angie: Different apartment in Moorhead.
Beth: I understand you had some health issues at the time. Can you tell me about that and what your biggest concern was then?
Angie: I didn’t always take my medications. My diabetes was up and the shower bothered me. Now I have help.
Beth: When you first heard about Independent by Design and CCRI, what did you think?
Angie: I thought it sounded like a good idea. I was scared to move.
Beth: What types of technology are you using with the Independent by Design team?
Angie: I used to have more. I have sensors for my medications box. I have a button for emergencies.
Beth: How does the technology and the Independent by Design team help you to be more independent?
Angie: I know there is always someone here. Daily staff visits or I get lonesome. I get out more.
Beth: Would you recommend using technology and the Independent by Design program to others?
Angie: I would, yeah. It is a good system for people to be in the community and not to stay home.
Beth: Anything else you would like to add that you feel is important?
Angie: If people really want to live on their own and be independent I think it is a good idea. It’s been good for me.
Learn more about Angie’s story and how, through initial conversations, she and her team were able to put together a support and response plan that met her needs while maintaining her desired level of independence.
Looking to begin conversations of your own surrounding technology use for increased independence and privacy? Begin the FREE 30 minute online training course “Technology 101: The Conversation” to get started today.
Don’t miss the next article!
Visit the ARRM Technology Resource Center to learn about more success stories and case studies showing how technology is changing the lives of those living with disabilities or learn more about how to start the conversation.